Sherdog’s Top 10: Best Fighters Never to Compete in the UFC

No. 7

By Mike Sloan Feb 24, 2016

7. Igor Vovchanchyn


Easily one of the most exciting fighters ever to compete in MMA, Vovchanchyn remains a favorite within the old-school community. The “Ice Cold” Ukrainian was a wrecking machine when the UFC was still in its infancy, and no one knows why the stocky 5-foot-9 powerhouse never graced the Octagon with his presence.

Vovchanchyn enjoyed an unimaginable run of success in his prime. Between Jan. 28, 1996 and July 4, 1999, he won 32 straight bouts, 27 of them finishes. At his peak, Vovchanchyn took on two-time UFC tournament winner Mark Kerr at Pride 7. They were two of the premier heavyweights of the era. Vovchanchyn knocked out the exhausted Kerr in the second round but landed a few illegal knees in the process, resulting in a no-contest.

The Vovchanchyn highlight reel is something to behold and includes one of the greatest knockouts in Pride Fighting Championships history -- a first-round KO of Francisco Bueno at Pride 8 in November 1999. He retired at the age of 32 in 2005.

Number 6 » Ricardo Arona

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